Friday, February 27, 2009


Dear readers,

I thought I was getting better yesterday but I wasn't. I got worse. Now I am in bed all day. It is probably all over for me.

I am going towards the light now... goodbye... goodbye!!!


PS The mini-market is only four doors down, am I allowed to go in my dressing gown and pyjamas?

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Droplet infection

The blog is ill-tended this week as I have a particularly virulent cold. It is hard enough to draw when you are wracked by coughs, let alone string a sentence together. I am on the mend now I think but it may be too late for my body, which is wan and weak. I intend to travel into the city this afternoon and one whiff of diesel may end my days.

The best cold I ever had was when I got a sinus infection. Once the malaise had passed, I would blow my nose and about two minutes later warm, thin, bright custard yellow goo would gush forth from my nostrils and have to be staunched mid-flow. Yes ladies and gentlemen, it was my brains leaking out which is why I am not allowed to marry, vote or drive a car any more.

This particular malady occurred after I spent two weeks in Brooklyn, which says plenty about the fine air quality in that neck of the woods.

What's the worst thing that's ever come out of your nose?

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Simultaneously bushy and sparse

If you'd said to me that this would actually work as a piece of graphic design, I would have said "you are crazy like a fox." But guess what? Another hot nugget that you voted for from the Carnival Of Ideas!

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Crowy considers

Here is a sneak preview of a new print I'm working on. I haven't decided whether it will be a limited canvas for the UK webcomix thing, or a longer run poster, but it is another in my Oz series. I will post up a finished version once it is coloured in.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Fop Chaser Problem Time

Oh dear oh dear.

Red onions at the "folk art jumble sale"

I wanted to write and say that I am really moved by the comments on my "state of the onion" post. I didn't write it to fish for compliments or to tease you with impending doom.

I was also very impressed by the standard of grammar, spelling and punctuation in those comments. I didn't realise that I had cultivated such an audience of upright citizens. I have issued each of you with a gold star.

I tried to address any questions when they were asked but I will answer the most frequently asked ones again.

Q. Will you reprint books 1, 2 and 3? Or do PDF collections like Diesel Sweeties did?

A. I just can't afford to. I only print 1500-2000 of my books at at time and it takes three years to get through a run. This is as true of original stuff as the reprint books. I don't want to make PDFs when you can read the whole archive on the website anyway, it doesn't make any sense to me - plus the bandwidth consumed would be huge.

Q. What about print on demand?

A. Print-on-demand means very high book prices and/or next to no profit for me. I typed in the specifications for "Blame The Sky" into's price calculator. The manufacturing cost was a very reasonable £37. I would aim to have it retail at around £100. I take credit cards.

Q. How about a top publisher such as Farrar, Straus & Giroux reissuing the early volumes?

A. Publishers lose interest when they find out that my ouevre is as visually consistent as a folk art jumble sale.

Q. Why don't you offer premium content on the website and charge people for it?

A. I put the fullness of my faculties into the daily comic and have little left over to generate phantasmogorias of walled-off content. Every time I work out a nice little ensemble for Esther, that is your premium content.

Q. (This was more of an accusation and it was not all that frequently asked) You dump characters all the time and introduce new ones! This spoils my enjoyment.

A. Sorry.

Q. Is the end nigh?

A. No.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

State of the onion

First the bad news: from next week there only be four comics a week (M-T-Th-F). I need a bit of breathing space to avoid burn-out. I'm sorry if anybody is disappointed.

Over the last few weeks I have been trying to make some decisions about Scary Go Round and where it is going. This is not meant to be some terribly dramatic news post where I bleat on about how hard it is to make a comic in the comfort of one's home day in day out.

I consider myself very lucky that tens of thousand of people read my comic every day. But it is a sad fact of long-form, story-based comics like mine that it is hard, after a certain point, to add new readers. The perception is that they carry a lot of history - even when like mine, the creator has been burning the history books every couple of years in order to survive.

In the last year or so I have tried to make the stories as stand-alone as I can, but the fact is that you lose readers over time and if you don't get new ones to replace them, slowly but surely you will go the way of all flesh! There are already a few webcomic ghost ships out there, long sunk by the weight of history. I am not keen to join them!

After 7 years it is probably time to replace Scary Go Round with something new. I have a pretty good idea about what to do next. But I still have a lot of SGR stories to tell and I don't really know what to do.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Raising your game

Yeah sure, Scary Go Round was all right, but I think this new project is the zenith of where I am going artistically.

Many thanks to "Pops" Alluvium.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Fop Chaser returns

Fop Chaser is still hunting fops. How sad that I cannot convert her antics into money. But you know, some genies are best left in the bottle I say.

Saturday, February 07, 2009

Vest zest

I was testing drawing on a smaller screen today as one day I might have to make my comics on it, so I redrew an old comic at random. I post it here for fun. I have to practice practice on different devices as I get thrown really easily by change, leading to gangling arms, mad proportions and big nutty heads. Even the above is barely consistent, I will have to do a dozen or more before I am actually comfortable.

Also today, enjoy the fine stylings of Katie Hanratty and Chris Doherty. Talent in the community.

Friday, February 06, 2009

Pop Friday

There hasn't been a point in the last 17 years where this wasn't exactly what I wanted to hear but man, there really is nothing new under the sun is there?

EVERYTHING WITH YOU - The Pains Of Being Pure At Heart

CRADLE - The Joy Formidable

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

Kitten Is King

I have designed a new print, it is just a fun thing in a run of ten.

Monday, February 02, 2009


Yesterday was hourly comics day! I thought I would join in for once which is something I never do, unfortunately I spent the whole day gripped by a powerful ennui, some would say "Weltschmerz". Do not worry for me, I have a robust character, the problem with verité is that it is still open to interpretation.

I have omitted, for art's sake, a very pleasant conversation with my mother and father, and an hour I spent ironing while watching an excellent episode of Grand Designs. The cheering effect of these wore off around 5pm and, as depicted, I reassumed my Edvard Munch position until nightfall.

And I spelled "inexplicably" wrong.

In other news, my great ally Marlo Meekins has asked me to tell you she has a new print on sale. If not us, who will keep her in felt tip pens?